The Volkswagen Group has announced a fresh new offensive for the Indian market, where between ŠKODA AUTO and Volkswagen, the group is aiming for a 5 % market share by 2025.
In a show of collective strength of the Volkswagen Group in India, the newly formed ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India – the entity formed by the merger of Volkswagen and Skoda in the Indian market – brought together all five entities under its umbrella – ŠKODA, Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche and Lamborghini – to one event, the first Media Night organised by the group in this market.
The highlight of the evening was the premiere of two compact SUVs – one each from ŠKODA and VW – that will be launched in the market over the next one year or so. Both the ŠKODA VISION IN and Volkswagen Taigun are based on the MQB-A0-IN platform, which is a variant of Volkswagen’s MQB car platform specially developed for the Indian market.
The production variants of the ŠKODA Vision IN as well as the VW Taigun will come with two petrol engines, the 1 l TSI turbo-petrol engine and the 1.5 l TSI turbo-petrol. The companies have confirmed they will not offer a diesel engine on the products, at least for the time being. Both products will take on current market favourites Hyundai Creta and the Kia Seltos.
Apart from showcasing the compact SUVs, Audi launched its flagship A8 L at a price of Rs 1.56 cr, while Lamborghini showcased the Huracán and Porsche the 911 Cabriolet.
It must be noted that the VW Group’s INDIA 2.0 project is being led by ŠKODA AUTO, which has assumed the responsibility of the region India in its latest thrust to capture a sizeable market share in the market. Together with ŠKODA AUTO, the Volkswagen Group is investing a total of € 1 bn (Rs 7,900 cr) in the INDIA 2.0 project of which € 250 mn will be invested in R&D. Two new entities – the ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab India and Software Development Centre – have been set-up with an aim to develop tailor-made mobility solutions for India.
Addressing the media, Bernhard Maier, CEO, ŠKODA AUTO called India one of the most exciting and promising growth markets for Volkswagen Group, and expressed hope that the INDIA 2.0 project would help the group achieve a combined market share of 5 % by 2025, depending on market and segment development. Commenting on the overall Indian market scenario, Maier said although the past few years have been volatile, the long term prospect of the Indian market is still very positive. He also said there needs to be a clear roadmap for electric vehicles, to ensure e-mobility takes off in the country.
Gurpratap Boparai, Managing Director, ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India reiterated the group’s commitment to reach up to 95 % of localisation in the new range of vehicles.
Jürgen Stackmann, Member of the board of management of the Volkswagen brand responsible for sales, marketing and after-sales spoke about the brand’s decision to focus on SUVs in India, and announced it will launch four new models in the next two years.